Starter culture ordered, am I missing anything to be safe?

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Starter culture ordered, am I missing anything to be safe?

Postby Fingers » Tue Mar 01, 2016 6:03 pm

Keeping this in basic simple terms if you will, for myself, am I missing anything here to keep from poisoning and killing myself. Well aware there’s no 100% guarantees with anything in life.

For Salami Sausage for eg

1. Use Salt 2.75%, Cure #2 0.25% and a starter culture at the correct % per kg
2. Keep temps very low when grinding the meat and making the sausage.
3. Move stuffed and tagged with weight sausage to a warm/hot humid area for 24 hours or so? (so many different ideas about this one, suspended in plastic bags with vinegar in the bottom sound the easy way?).
4. Move to a cool humid well ventilated drying room.
5. Once 35% weight loss is achieved... BING the dinner bell can ring, provided it does not look and smell like old road kill!

I am aware that there are many books out there, some of which I am currently reading and find they do contradict each other. To try an summarise the whole business in 5 sort lines is in no way an attempt to belittle the whole complex business. I just do not wish to study food science ie "handbook of fermented meat and poultry". But I don't wish to be so cavalier as Steve Lamb from the river cottage, but I am more swaying to his side, just I am adding nitrates and a starter culture.

I want to keep it safe and you guys have convinced me to use the Cures and the Starter cultures. Cheers for your input.
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Re: Starter culture ordered, am I missing anything to be saf

Postby NCPaul » Tue Mar 01, 2016 7:38 pm

3. Move stuffed and tagged with weight sausage to a warm/hot humid area for 24 hours or so? (so many different ideas about this one, suspended in plastic bags with vinegar in the bottom sound the easy way?).


Vinegar evaporates too quickly to be of use. The starter culture will make lactic acid and gluconic acid for the sausage if you give it 0.3 - 0.5 % dextrose (glucose) for food. You can use table sugar at slightly higher amounts if you don't have dextrose.

We're glad you are focusing on safety.
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Re: Starter culture ordered, am I missing anything to be saf

Postby wheels » Tue Mar 01, 2016 7:49 pm

Why not test a bit of spare mix (kept in the same conditions) with a pH test strip - a narrow band one. You can then see what the pH is after fermentation? A whole pack would be under a tenner.

Phil
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Re: Starter culture ordered, am I missing anything to be saf

Postby Fingers » Tue Mar 01, 2016 8:03 pm

Got the bag of vinegar from here viewtopic.php?f=13&t=12568&p=105284&hilit=plastic+bags+with+vinegar#p105284

I don't have a very warm humid place to do the fermentation stage so thought this possibly the way to go. The best I can do would be a temp of about 24deg c but the humidity would not be very high. This plastic bag idea sounded like the easiest way to raise humidity. If not vinegar then a bag with water?
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Re: Starter culture ordered, am I missing anything to be saf

Postby Fingers » Tue Mar 01, 2016 8:07 pm

wheels wrote:Why not test a bit of spare mix (kept in the same conditions) with a pH test strip - a narrow band one. You can then see what the pH is after fermentation? A whole pack would be under a tenner.

Phil


Ah ok, so the whole point of the fermentation stage is to get the ph to a certain level. This may happen in a warm room and the humidity is this to stop the outside from drying to quickly during this?

So a temporary green house type of environment.
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Re: Starter culture ordered, am I missing anything to be saf

Postby Swing Swang » Tue Mar 01, 2016 8:14 pm

Just a quick reply - the reason that I used vinegar in my bags was mainly to stop things growing in the fluid that drips into the bag rather than for the vinegar to have an effect on the product.
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Re: Starter culture ordered, am I missing anything to be saf

Postby Fingers » Tue Mar 01, 2016 8:20 pm

How big were the bags, where they individual and were that free from touching the sausage. Sort of framed off so they are not touching? And how much vinegar?
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Re: Starter culture ordered, am I missing anything to be saf

Postby wheels » Tue Mar 01, 2016 9:01 pm

Fingers wrote:Ah ok, so the whole point of the fermentation stage is to get the ph to a certain level.


Yes

This may happen in a warm room and the humidity is this to stop the outside from drying to quickly during this?


Yes

So a temporary green house type of environment.


Yes
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Re: Starter culture ordered, am I missing anything to be saf

Postby Fingers » Wed Mar 02, 2016 11:50 am

My fan oven has a defrost setting which keeps it at constant 29degC, I can control the humidity with water in the bottom.

This maybe a little on the warm side but its all I have to work with so how long would you say to hang them in there for? I will be using bessastart salami culture.
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Re: Starter culture ordered, am I missing anything to be saf

Postby wheels » Wed Mar 02, 2016 4:24 pm

Were there no instructions with it? Was it from Weschenfelders? If so, I'm sure that they'll help. If they can't, maybe give the manufacturer's UK office a ring - Moguntia 0191 517 0944.

If you have no joy, I can look up the times for a similar product from another manufacturer for you.

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Re: Starter culture ordered, am I missing anything to be saf

Postby Fingers » Thu Mar 03, 2016 8:20 am

Hi Phil, I only ordered the bessastart yesterday morning, so if it dont come with instructions I will ring them. Cheers.

I have abandoned the oven idea and made a chamber out of these two items.

http://www.wilko.com/slow-cookers/wilko ... vt/0316165

http://www.wilko.com/invt/0239167

The pot full of water in the slow cooker and set to low, tests last night proved I can control the temp and humidity in the chamber by having the lid of the pot open at different degrees. As the cooker regulates the temp its self for slow cooking this seems to be quite effective in creating consistent environment. £15 for the set up, which will hang 3-4kg of salami, not bad.

I am now looking for litmus paper to test the Ph so I know when the sausage is ready to go into the drying room! I got the idea of having a go at making home salami from a River Cottage video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7O_5KVr7Nxs, however having researched in the last 16 days this seems a little dangerous.!
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Re: Starter culture ordered, am I missing anything to be saf

Postby NCPaul » Thu Mar 03, 2016 12:05 pm

Do they have a video where they make a parachute out of a bed sheet? :D
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Re: Starter culture ordered, am I missing anything to be saf

Postby wheels » Thu Mar 03, 2016 4:06 pm

Fingers - try to get pH test strips rather than litmus - they're far easier to read. Narrow band ones would be best something like what is used by home-brewers.

These have the right sort of range of 4.6 to 6.2:

http://www.the-home-brew-shop.co.uk/aca ... thgsZyLSUk

HTH
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